Lets be honest. Ukraine’s efforts to counter Russia’s propaganda and attract the worlds attention to what’s happening on frontline has been poor – or put another way, fucking hopeless. Into the eighth year of Russia’s occupation of eastern Ukraine, and you’d be hard-pressed to view a frontline video in English, or with English subtitles. All videos produced by the Ukrainian military and Ministry of Defence are frustratingly still in Ukrainian. This means Ukraine’s only talking to itself & not informing the wider world about Russia’s occupation of eastern Ukraine & Crimea.
Good reporting has a knock-on effect. If media outlets around the world can access translated, informative, eye-catching frontline reports, with a little action thrown in, this may spark their interest & prompt them to send reporters to the region. If world leaders & politicians can watch translated videos, they’re more likely to be point to them as evidence more should be done to stop Russia’s aggression. And obviously, translated videos will get far more views/shares on YouTube & social media, thereby countering Russia’s propaganda & drawing in the worlds attention.
Now the good news.
Seen above, for their daily reports, the Ukrainian military responsible for the frontline (Joint Forces Operation), have started using a computer graphic screen. This is a decidedly marked improvement on the previous bland style of reporting, which regrettably the Ukrainian Ministry of Defence still adopt.
What we now have is a large map and a user-friendly status report. Areas fired upon by Russia’s forces (RF) are highlighted, with explosion graphics appearing on the map. Check out today’s report on Face Book.
On the left hand side from the top, we have the number of RF ceasefire violations (Total of 3 on Sept 15th). Below this, the number of ceasefire violations so far today. As the above graphic is from this mornings 7am report, RF have yet to fire today, so it’s marked with a 0. Under the 0, the number of Minsk ceasefire agreement violations are reported – with 1 recorded due to RF using 120mm heavy mortars to shell Ukrainian positions defending town of Avdiivka. Below this, the weapons graphics lists the types fired by RF – mortars, anti-tank rockets & machine guns.
And finally, the number of Ukrainian military losses, or casualties. Note on the Sept 14th report seen below, 1 Ukrainian soldier was reported wounded. In addition, the screen can bring up images from the frontline, which add to the impact of this new style of reporting. Yes, maddingly it’s still only in Ukrainian, but it’s definitely welcome progress.